Located on a thickly wooded site, Wilbert Snow Elementary School has been designed to evoke the image and character of a park. The original school was a seven-building campus that allowed children close contact with the site, but this resulted in lost instructional time in bad weather.
A single structure now connects the existing gymnasium, auditorium and a CAPACITY550COST PER SQ FT$140.00CITATIONCrow Island School CitationFEATURED IN1999 Educational Interiors1998 Architectural PortfolioINTERIOR CATEGORYCommon Areas classroom building, while maintaining the feeling of walking through the woods to go to class. The remains of an 18th-century road believed to be the location of a town meeting with George Washington passes through the site. At different points it becomes an outdoor learning center, playground and the main lobby of the school. A pedestrian bridge from the main building provides protected passage to the new dining hall, while maintaining neighborhood access to the recreational amenities of the site.
Instructional areas are each identified by signage and cast-stone medallions representing plants and animals found on the site. Wood, masonry and glass form a palette of materials that further connects the learning environment to the natural one.
Photographer: ©Woodruff/Brown Photography
"The building exterior and interior materials are consistently warm and appropriate for the setting."—1999 jury